MediaMusic

I wrote a song for a puppet dog to sing to a real dog

I wrote a song for a puppet dog to sing to a real dog

Let me explain. Hacker the Dog is one of CBBC’s most famous faces. Iggy is the Blue Peter guide dog. In celebration of Iggy’s first anniversary working on Blue Peter, it was decided that Hacker would serenade her to the tune of Mandy by Barry Manilow. And naturally, as the token music graduate on the Blue Peter team, I was asked to make it happen.

Fortunately I love writing parody lyrics, the copyright holders were happy to give permission, and Mandy is an all-time favourite of Hacker’s puppeteer, Phil Fletcher. The amazing CBBC Presentation team (who make all the continuity links with Hacker and his pals) were able to fit in a slot for Hacker to perform it, as well as for him to come into the Blue Peter studio so we could get some shots of him cuddling Iggy. The result is a funny and surprisingly touching piece of content, which sits just as well online as it did in Iggy’s special anniversary edition of the show.

Strings Attached Medley

Strings Attached Medley

This is the latest promo video for Strings Attached, the wedding/function band I play cello for. Here’s the full list of featured songs, if you’re interested – all great tunes for weddings and parties, that show off our very eclectic range!

  • One Day Like This by Elbow
  • Livin’ On A Prayer by Bon Jovi
  • Rather Be by Clean Bandit
  • Moondance by Van Morrison
  • Billie Jean by Michael Jackson
  • I’ll Be There For You by The Rembrandts

The hobby that sometimes makes me money

The hobby that sometimes makes me money

That’s how I describe my relationship with music. I do it because I love it – that’s why I have a degree in it – but I’ve never pursued it as a full-time occupation for fear that I might stop loving it so much.

That said, I do have the privilege of knowing a lot of ‘proper musicians’ which means I get chances to play gigs of various kinds – whether that’s in a string quartet at a wedding or in a full band at a bigger event.

I play the cello and bass guitar, and also compose from time to time. Here’s an electroacoustic piece I wrote while at uni, based on old recordings of Irish folksongs:

Ellie and me, playing the violin and cello
Ellie and me at a photo shoot for Strings Attached. Photo by the lovely Lucy Smith.

Strings Attached

Strings Attached

I’m very proud to be part of this awesome foursome. Strings Attached is the latest addition to the Funk Soul Familya Manchester-based collective of musicians that provides professional-quality music for every occasion.

We’re specifically focused on the more chilled-out side of things, playing a wide range of well-known songs in our own special acoustic style. There’s a sample of our music below, but you can find out more on our website or Facebook page.